For the first time, federal health officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended Wednesday that Americans at risk of HIV/AIDS take a daily pill that has shown to prevent infection of HIV. That drug, Truvada, is currently used by fewer than 10,000 people, and would likely increase to 500,000 a year if the new guidelines are followed. The guidelines tell doctors to consider the drug regimen, called PrEP, short for pre-exposure prophylaxis, for gay men who have sex without condoms; heterosexuals with high-risk partners, such as drug injectors or male bisexuals who have unprotected sex; patients who regularly have sex with anyone they know is infected; and anyone who shares needles or injects drugs. HIV infection rates in the U.S. have remained steady at 50,000 a year over the past decade, despite official advice to rely on condoms.
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